#AtoZChallenge : Nepenthe


The clock struck 7 and the Church bells rang too. I was kneeling down, with my arms folded in prayer. Though my knees hurt, I kept on praying for I knew you needed my prayers. I was led into another room. There was sorrow written on everyone’s face and it had been so for a few days now. Silence. And more silence. No one spoke a word and I wondered what was happening. I didn’t know if I should speak up because I didn’t know what to ask.


I was hugged. Not the brief one of greeting or parting, but the one that spoke of shared grief. Amidst controlled sobs, those words were spoken.


“It is over.”


My world came crashing down. That tiny flicker of hope that I had held on to was now gone. All that remained was reality. It was reality that seemed too harsh to be true. Tears well up in my eyes and I ran away to a place where I could be alone. I did’t know how to deal with sorrow so deep. I didn’t realize was death was until that moment. The fact that I could never meet you again, that you’d never be there when I needed you was too hard for my nine year old mind to process. I remembered the last conversation that we had. But I could never really bid you goodbye for I always expected you to return. Why did you have to leave me?


It has been a while now – a few years to be precise. But the pain has still remained. They say time heals. But it doesn’t. The pain is always there, you just get used to it.


I know I need to find my nepenthe. But the pain is too hard to forget and memories are too strong to let go.

Nepenthe : anything that causes forgetfulness of sorrow
Origin : Greek


I’m participating in the A to Z Challenge again this year. This is my third time participating in the challenge. I’m going with the theme of  “Rare, unusual and beautiful words from various languages”

7 responses to “#AtoZChallenge : Nepenthe”

  1. Kalpanaa says:

    This really tugged at my heart strings. I think small things are Nepenthe – like those beautiful flowers, or a nice cup of coffee. They take your mind off this kind of grief – even if it is only momentarily.

  2. Jayanthi says:

    Nice way of explaining, Reema – we all need some form of Nepenthe in our lives!

  3. Reminds me f the sound of music song Raindrops on roses…. small things that exist arround us that make us forget our sorrows. 🙂

  4. Balaka says:

    I also need to find my nepenthe. Thanks for making me aware of this word. https://trinalooksback.com/2018/04/16/nani/

  5. subroto says:

    ‘Forgetfulness of sorrow’ is in itself such a lovely turn of phrase. We all need to find our nepenthe. Nice one.

  6. Sigh. I could do with some nepenthe in my life now.

  7. Aditi says:

    Such a beautiful write. The grief, the sorrow the confusion and the reality of end…

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